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Ed Sheeran didn't copy Marvin Gaye song, jury finds

The estate of Marvin Gaye's co-writer for the song "Let's Get It On" sued Sheeran for copyright infringement.
Ed Sheeran didn't copy Marvin Gaye song, jury finds
Posted at 11:47 AM, May 04, 2023

A Manhattan jury found Ed Sheeran is not guilty of copyright infringement in a case involving his Grammy Award-winning song "Thinking Out Loud."

The estate of Ed Townsend, who co-wrote the song "Let's Get It On" with Marvin Gaye, sued the British singer-songwriter for copyright infringement, alleging Sheeran copied the 1973 classic song's chord progressions and rhythmic elements in his 2014 song.

The jury reached the unanimous verdict Thursday six years after the case was initially filed and just over a week after the case began.

Sheeran has long denied the "really insulting" allegations and even said he would be "done" with music if he were found guilty.

The musician testified the melodies involved in the case are often used in pop songs, and he even performed live in court to demonstrate his point, playing the chords used in "Thinking Out Loud" while singing various songs from other artists, whom he testified he did not copy.

His co-writer of "Thinking Out Loud," Amy Wage, echoed his point in testimony, saying she was "just playing simple chords that I knew how to play" and that it was "not possible" for her to have infringed on another song, according to CNN.

Ben Crump, who represented the plaintiffs, said the case was about "giving credit where credit is due" in opening arguments. He told jurors a videotape of Sheeran playing a mashup of the two songs during a concert was their "smoking gun," according to ABC News.

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